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Access and Functional Needs

Individuals with access and functional needs are defined as anyone who, without the assistance of another person, would have difficulty evacuating or relocating to a safe location. UMD community members should feel empowered to self-disclose their need for assistance to a colleague, a peer, or a professor/advisor.

Emergency Response Tips: 

  • Ensure that the individual is aware of the emergency. 
  • Before attempting to offer assistance, always ask the individual how you can best assist them, whether there are any special considerations that should be made and any items that need to come with them.
  • You may assist in evacuating individuals if it does not place you in personal danger.
    • Note: non-emergency personnel should never attempt to carry anyone down the stairs.
  • In the event of an evacuation: assist individuals who are unable to use the stairs by guiding them to a refuge area. Provide emergency responders with the individuals’ location either by calling 911 or after evacuation. 
    • Note: You may stay with the person requiring assistance if it does not place you in additional danger.
  • In the event of an active shooter: Ask the individual if they need assistance either evacuating to a safe location or concealing themselves. 
    • Note: Consider using personal assistive devices (e.g., canes, crutches, wheelchairs) as a weapon if needed.


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